New Zealand Labour Party

Labour mourns Dame Dorothy Fraser

Labour Leader Andrew Little said the party is today mourning the loss of the youngest person to join the Labour Party, Dame Dorothy Fraser, who went on to be a stalwart of the Dunedin community and tireless worker for others.

“It is with much sadness that we learnt of the passing of Dame Dorothy, who died yesterday aged 89.

“Dame Dorothy was a well-known community figure who gave so much back to the Dunedin South community. She spent 29 years on the Otago Hospital Board, was a Dunedin City Councillor, an Otago University councillor, Otago High School board of governors member, and chairwoman of Montecillo Trust Board.

“The widow of former Labour Cabinet Minister Bill Fraser, Dame Dorothy was a force to be reckoned with. Her egalitarian principles attracted her to the Labour Party and she became the youngest member ever at the age of 14. She said at the time that she joined because she had ‘little faith in the party if it was ruled by fuddy-duddies, so I rounded up 10 other young members and we formed our own junior branch’.

“Her lifetime achievements were immense – she was an innovator at a time when women found it difficult to have roles outside the domestic sphere.

“The Labour Party sends their thoughts and condolences to Dame Dorothy’s family,” Andrew Little says.